04/23/2014 SAUDI ARABIA Death toll hits 81 with 17 more MERS cases reported The number of people infected with the virus now stands at 261. Saudi King fires Health minister, who had said that MERS-related deaths had dropped by 60 per cent, that more than 20,000 people had been examined over the last few weeks, and that his ministry had done a good job. Jeddah
(AsiaNews/Agencies) - An outbreak of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)
appears to be spreading quickly. In Saudi Arabia, 17 new cases have been
confirmed, bringing the total number of infections in that country to 261, 81 of
04/23/2014 VATICAN Pope warns against placing hope in "dead things" such as vanity, money and success At the General Audience, Pope Francis reflects on the Angels’ words at the tomb: "Why look among the dead for someone who is alive?". And what do I do ? Which route do I follow to encounter the living Christ . He will always be close to us to correct our course if we have gone wrong". 04/23/2014 LEBANON The difficult journey to choose Lebanon's new president starts today by Paul Dakiki Neither Geagea nor Helou are expected to get the votes needed in today's first session. Rival coalitions will have to look for a "consensus" candidate with the names of Amin Gemayel, Robert Ghanem and Michel Aoun at the top of the list.
04/23/2014 IRAN Iran, President Rouhani: End to discrimination, equal rights and opportunities for women The head of state spoke at the National Forum on Women Shaping Economy and Culture . He criticizes "those who consider the presence of women in society a threat. According to the Islamic rules, man is not the stronger sex and woman is not the weaker one". 04/22/2014 TURKEY For Bartholomew, the Christian mission is the liberation of man from the power of darkness by NAT da Polis In his Easter message, the Ecumenical Patriarch writes, "Unfortunately, the annihilation and suppression of the weakest by the strongest dominates in the secular pyramid of today's reality." However, "History [. . .] has proven that real progress cannot exist without God."
04/22/2014 SYRIA For Gregorios III, the destruction of Ma'aloula churches is a "war crime" by Fady Noun The patriarch visited the village of Ma'aloula after the army took it back from the Islamist al-Nusra Front. ""An apocalyptic spectacle presented itself," he said. The West is watching the destruction of Syria "with criminal indifference". 04/21/2014 VATICAN Pope: Easter joy "is not a masquerade! It is impressed on our hearts and shines through our actions". Before reciting the Regina Caeli, that replaces the Angelus prayer during the Easter season, Francis invites the faithful "to take the Gospel, read the chapters on the Resurrection" and turn to the figure of Mary "Mother of all the disciples, Mother of the Church, Mother of hope". Easter Monday "prolongs the joy of the Resurrection of Christ". 04/20/2014 VATICAN Pope: May the Risen Christ help us to reach out to those who are wounded and bring peace to those who suffer from war and violence Syria, but also Iraq, Nigeria, South Sudan, Central African Republic, Ukraine and Venezuela in Pope Francis’ prayers. " In every human situation, marked by frailty, sin and death, the Good News is no mere matter of words, but a testimony to unconditional and faithful love: it is about leaving ourselves behind and encountering others". 04/20/2014 VATICAN Pope: The Resurrection, an invitation to rediscover our baptism and become witnesses to Christ At the Easter Vigil Francis speaks of the "return to Galilee, the place where they were first called" where Jesus spoke to the apostles, drawing new energy from the sources of our faith". "It is not to go back in time; it is not a kind of nostalgia. It is returning to our first love, in order to receive the fire which Jesus has kindled in the world and to bring that fire to all people, to the very ends of the earth". 04/19/2014 VATICAN Way of the Cross: "Evil will not have the last word; love, mercy and forgiveness will," pope says In the Cross of Jesus, we find "all the bitterness of the betrayal perpetrated by Judas and Peter, all the vanity of bullies, and all the arrogance of false friends." Yet, in front of so many evils, "we also see the vastness of God's love for he does not treat us according to our sins but according to his mercy." 04/18/2014 IRAN - UNITED NATIONS Nuclear deal: Iran diluted half of its higher-grade enriched uranium stockpile The International Agency for Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) announces results. The United States responds by unfreezing funds for US$ 450 million. Hope remains for a final deal by next July. 04/18/2014 IRAQ Chaldean Patriarch celebrates Holy Thursday with disabled and marginalised Christians and Muslims by Joseph Mahmoud Mar Sako visited a residential facility in the Iraqi capital that caters to people with severe disabilities. His Beatitude performed the traditional rite of 'Washing of the Feet' on 12 people, including two Muslim women. "Easter is for you," he told the disabled residents. After the service, he offered them a meal, as a token of closeness and sharing. 04/17/2014 VATICAN Pope: "The washing of the feet", "a gesture of love, of service" to remind us that "we must be servants of one another" Francis celebrates "in Coena Domini" Mass at the Don Gnocchi Foundation. He washes and kisses the feet of 12 people of different ages, of different disabilities different religious affiliations, three foreigners and nine Italians. 04/17/2014 ITALY - ASIA Easter, victory over death and impotence by Bernardo Cervellera 04/17/2014 VATICAN Pope: A priest’s "joy", "anoints", is "incorruptible", "missionary" and guarded by poverty, obedience and loyalty Pope Francis celebrates the Chrism Mass with "his" priests. The priestly joy only flows “when the pastor is in the midst of his flock". Even in "in those moments of listlessness and boredom which at times overcome us in our priestly life (and which I too have experienced), even in those moments God’s people are able to “guard” that joy; they are able to protect you, to embrace you and to help you open your heart to find renewed joy"
04/17/2014 SYRIA Gregorios III to set up a forum for Syrian Christian intellectuals to promote a society based on Gospel values by Fady Noun 04/17/2014 MALAYSIA - PHILIPPINES MERS first victim in Asia: A Malaysian returning from a pilgrimage to Mecca 04/16/2014 HOLY LAND For Christian religious leaders in Jerusalem, Easter brings hope for peace in the region 04/16/2014 IRAQ Iraqi government closes Abu Ghraib prison 04/16/2014 VATICAN Pope: The Resurrection "is not a happy ending in a movie" but "a humble victory of God, that humanly looks like a failure" 04/16/2014 IRAQ Mar Sako at Easter, the power of Christ's broken and risen body pushes Iraq to new life by Mar Louis Raphael I Sako 04/15/2014 SYRIA Fr Frans van der Lugt died in Syria, for Syria by Fady Noun 04/15/2014 SAUDI ARABIA Saudi court shuts down liberal forum 04/15/2014 ASIA Asia home to world’s biggest arms traders 04/14/2014 VATICAN For pope, the seminary is not a refuge, hence 'Woe do the wicked shepherds' 04/14/2014 SYRIA I will miss you Fr Frans, you inspired us all, says Syrian Jesuit by Tony Homsy* 04/14/2014 KUWAIT Kuwait invests 27 billion to upgrade refineries 04/13/2014 VATICAN Pope asks, Am I like Pilate? When the situation gets tough, do I wash my hands? 04/11/2014 SYRIA Syria rebel commander denies charges of violence against Armenian community
ITALY - ASIA Easter, victory over death and impotence by Bernardo Cervellera SYRIA I will miss you Fr Frans, you inspired us all, says Syrian Jesuit by Tony Homsy* A young priest from the Society of Jesus remembers the life and work of Fr Frans van der Lugt, who was killed in Homs after he refused to abandon residents beleaguered by hunger and war. "He gave and continues to give everything for the Church, Syria, and peace. His story and qualities made him an exceptional missionary and witness to the Gospel." Reprinted courtesy of 'The Jesuit Post'.
04/21/2014 VATICAN Pope: Easter joy "is not a masquerade! It is impressed on our hearts and shines through our actions". 04/17/2014 BANGLADESH Bangladesh, tribal Catholic gang raped: Christians and Muslims demand justice by Sumon Corraya 04/16/2014 VATICAN Pope: The Resurrection "is not a happy ending in a movie" but "a humble victory of God, that humanly looks like a failure" 04/16/2014 INDIA Narendra Modi's right hand man stopped for inciting hatred against Muslims 04/17/2014 SRI LANKA Easter should spur Catholics to defend human rights in Sri Lanka by Melani Manel Perera 04/16/2014 TIBET - CHINA A 32-year-old Tibetan dies in a blaze to protest Chinese occupation 04/16/2014 CHINA Dongguan: 40,000 workers down tools again 04/18/2014 PAKISTAN Good Friday in Pakistan: fasting and prayers for Asia Bibi, Sawan Masih and other blasphemy victims by Jibran Khan 04/17/2014 VATICAN Pope: A priest’s "joy", "anoints", is "incorruptible", "missionary" and guarded by poverty, obedience and loyalty 04/17/2014 VATICAN Pope: "The washing of the feet", "a gesture of love, of service" to remind us that "we must be servants of one another"
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